Information

NHS Scotland performance against LDP standards

Performance data on the current Local Delivery Plan (LDP) Standards - priorities set and agreed between the Scottish Government and NHS Boards to provide assurance on NHS Scotland performance. 


LDP Standard

90% of planned / elective patients to commence treatment within 18 weeks of referral.

Current national performance

In March 2022, 71.9% of patients were reported as commencing treatment within 18 weeks.

About this LDP standard

Shorter waits can lead to earlier diagnosis and better outcomes for many patients as well as reducing unnecessary worry and uncertainty for patients and their relatives. It also reduces inequalities by addressing variations in waiting times between NHS Boards or individual hospitals. Shorter waiting times will have a positive impact on the health of the patient, but in the long-term may result in some positive impact on all businesses, as key workers who are absent from the work due to illness may be treated earlier and will therefore be able to return to the workplace earlier.

Performance against this standard

The standard for delivery is for 90% of patients to wait no longer than 18 weeks from referral to treatment.

The data published on 31 May 2022 covers performance against the waiting time standards for the overarching Referral to Treatment (RTT) and eight key diagnostic tests for the quarter ending 30 December 2021.  The Stage of Treatment data (which covers first Outpatient appointments and Treatment Time Guarantee (TTG) for the same quarter) was also published on 22 February 2022. 

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has continued to have an impact on the delivery of NHS services. While many services are now gradually being reinstated, performance against these targets and standards is still impacted by this situation. 

In March 2022, 71.9% of patient journeys for which an 18 weeks Referral to Treatment waiting time could be measured were reported as being seen within the stated time.

To be able to calculate a patient’s waiting time it is necessary for NHS Boards to link all stages of the patient’s journey from the initial referral to the start of treatment. In quarter ending 2022, the waiting time could be measured for 84.4% of patient journeys, excluding NHS Grampian and NHS Tayside). NHS Boards are in the process of fully implementing upgrades to their systems to improve data collection.

The graph below shows the percentage of patient journeys completed within 18 weeks since April 2015.

NHS Board level performance is shown for the most recent time period in the table below.

The table below shows the percentage of patients journeys completed within 18 weeks, by NHS Board, for March 2022.

NHS Board

March 2022

NHS AYRSHIRE & ARRAN*

64.4%

NHS BORDERS

65.6%

NHS DUMFRIES & GALLOWAY

72.3%

NHS FIFE

69.8%

NHS FORTH VALLEY

69.7%

NHS GRAMPIAN

NHS GREATER GLASGOW & CLYDE

74.6%

NHS HIGHLAND

68.4%

NHS LANARKSHIRE

71.8%

NHS LOTHIAN

74.5%

NHS ORKNEY

88.4%

NHS SHETLAND

76.8%

NHS TAYSIDE

NHS WESTERN ISLES

86.3%

NHS NATIONAL WAITING TIMES CENTRE

90.9%

NHSSCOTLAND

71.9%

Source: PHS 18 weeks RTT data submission

.. NHS Grampian have not been able to provide data for March 2020 - December 2021, Scotland figures are provisional.

.. NHS Tayside have not been able to provide data for May- December 2021, Scotland figures are provisional.

Further information

18 weeks: The Referral to Treatment Standard

Waiting Times statistics

18 Weeks RTT

Waiting Times Improvement Plan

Related National Outcomes

Page updated: 10 June 2022.

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